McLeod opened the door Veteran hurdles and sprint coach, Raymond ‘KC’ Graham, is hoping that former Calabar High School star, Michael O’Hara, will consider a return to the 110-metre hurdles. Graham cites the competition for the national team places in the flat sprints, and O’Hara’s fine high-school career in the hurdles as reasons for his suggestion. In addition, he says O’Hara’s speed will be an asset. O’Hara, who turns 20 on September 29, hasn’t hurdled since his exciting Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) Boys and Girls’ Championship win over World Youth record holder, Jaheel Hyde, in 2015. “I think he needs to go back to the sprint hurdles,” Graham suggested. In a reference to newly crowned Olympic champion Omar McLeod, he theorised: “There’s too much competition in the sprints, and I think what Omar has done, I think he has opened the door. “When you look at Jamaica’s sprints, 200, 100, if you realise, some of the guys have left and gone overseas”. These sprinters include Jacques Harvey, 2011 World University Games 100m winner for Jamaica; former St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) and University of Technology (UTech) speed merchants Andrew Fisher and Kemarley Brown; and Winston Barnes, lead-off runner on Jamaica’s 2006 World Junior 4x100m champion team. All ran in the Rio Olympics for other countries. Harvey and Barnes now represent Turkey, while Fisher and Brown run in the red of Bahrain. Graham believes O’Hara’s fine hurdling for Calabar High is a hint that he could have a bright future over the barriers. Even though O’Hara was also a 100-metre champion in all Boys and Girls Championships’ classes and took gold and bronze at the 2013 World Youth Championships and the 2014 World Junior Championships, Graham feels certain that the talented young athlete should hurdle. “With the speed that O’Hara has, and he already has the technique, I think going back to the hurdles will do a lot of good for him,” Graham said. Graham’s observations mirror earlier comments from 2006 Commonwealth 110-metre hurdles champion Maurice Wignall. “Maybe later on, a year, two years down, you may see him come back in it because Dwight Thomas did something similar,” said Wignall. Thomas, a star sprinter and hurdler at Calabar High in the late 1990s, reached the 2005 World Championship 100m final, but returned to the 110-metre hurdles later in his career.
The Trackers opened the scoring in the first period as they scored just over a minute in to the game. The score held steady at 1-0 through the frame and throughout the second as well.The Storm came out strong as the third period began and took advantage of some poor play by the Trackers as Grande Prairie scored three times in the opening three and a half minutes. The Trackers scored once in the final five minutes to close out the scoring in the game at 4-2.Head coach Shawn Brinsky said despite the team jumping out to an early lead he wasn’t overly satisfied with the play of his squad until the second period.- Advertisement -“We started off slower than I hoped. We got off to an early lead but even thought we got up early I wasn’t content with out play. We didn’t pressure like we had hoped to, and utilize our speed. We made some adjustments in the first intermission and in the second period we played very well. We dominated the play, we generated shots on net and quality offensive opportunities,” he stated.The difference in the game was the early moments of the third period where discipline problems presented itself. It was a similar situation the Trackers had encountered previously, but this time they were unable to recover with a win.“We went into the third period, and we saw this in Slave Lake a bit, we had about a four minute lapse when we didn’t seem to start the period as strong as we had hoped to. In that four minutes we were undisciplined not just in our team play but with infractions,” Brinsky explained. “We found ourselves on our heels and we found ourselves getting scored on very quickly. They got three goals on us in a period of about four minutes. We called a time out to regroup and for the most part I thought we led the play in the third period.”Advertisement Scoring for the Trackers were Levi Johnson, and Jack Blisner. Assists went to Jacob Lang, Nolan Legace, and Clayton Lepine.Goaltender Mitch Traichevich made 28 saves in the game. read more